Lowering Arizona (if that’s even still possible)
Associated Press photo
Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu declares at a press conference in Florence, Arizona, yesterday that he indeed is gay but that he didn’t threaten his reported former male lover, “Jose,” with deportation if “Jose” didn’t keep his mouth shut about their sexual relationship.
This reads like the plot of a Coen brothers movie (except that it’s a Reuters news story):
A local sheriff resigned as a co-chair of Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney’s campaign in Arizona [yesterday] after he was accused of threatening a former male lover with deportation to Mexico if he talked about their relationship.
In an embarrassing incident for Romney’s struggling campaign, Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu denied that he or his lawyer made the deportation threat but stepped down from helping the former Massachusetts governor in the border state.
Babeu acknowledged at a press conference [yesterday] that he is gay and that he had a personal relationship with the man making the allegations, whom he identified only as “Jose.”
“Sheriff Babeu has stepped down from his volunteer position with the campaign so he can focus on the allegations against him. We support his decision,” the Romney campaign said in a statement.
The Phoenix New Times alternative newspaper reported on Friday that Babeu’s lawyer had asked Jose to sign a legal agreement that would require him to keep quiet about his involvement with the sheriff. According to the newspaper, the lawyer also warned Jose that any talk about their relationship could imperil his immigration status.
“All of these allegations that were in one of these newspapers were absolutely false, except for the issue that referred to me as being gay, and that is the truth. I am gay,” Babeu said at the news conference. …
I don’t think that the New Times (a quality news weekly that I used to read when I was [unfortunately...] a resident of Phoenix in the 1990s) wants to be sued for libel, so I tend to believe that the New Times reported the truth.
In any event, what a head case Paul Babeu must be.
The Reuters news story further notes that
Babeu first came to statewide prominence in 2010 when he appeared in a campaign ad for U.S. Senator John McCain of Arizona, the Republican presidential nominee two years earlier, calling for tough immigration measures.
The sheriff, who is a tough law-and-order advocate, was considered a rising star in state Republican politics and a strong candidate to win the Republican nomination for a congressional seat in Arizona this year.
Babeu is a strong critic of the handling of immigration issues by the administration of President Barack Obama.
Yet Babeu reportedly took on an male Mexican immigrant as his lover? And he was assisting the homophobic Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign?
Again, what a head case, to publicly be castigating “illegals”* while one of them, reportedly, privately is your lover, and to publicly be supporting Mitt Romney — whose patriarchal, misogynist, white supremacist, homophobic, “Christo”fascist Mormon cult was instrumental in passing Proposition H8 — while privately being gay.
I’m glad that Babeu at least now is out of the closet, so that we can’t call him a closet case as well as a head case, but of course it doesn’t count as courage on his part, since the New Times outed him; he very apparently never would have come out on his own, but would have continued his hypocritical, double-standard charade indefinitely, apparently.
Babeu’s political career in Arizona should be dead — not because he’s a hypocrite and a liar and a coward, which would be good cause, but primarily because he is gay in one of the nation’s reddest, most hateful and bigoted states.
The upshot is that now that he is out of the closet and his political career within the Repugnican Tea Party just died, he should have plenty of time to have his head examined.
P.S. Via the Phoenix New Times’ website, here is a photo of Babeu with his beau “Jose”:
Maher: Racists break eighth-graders’ code of conduct
Speaking of Arizona, Bill Maher recently did a nice (if rather dated) rant on how members of the treasonous, white supremacist Repugnican Tea Party feel quite comfortable disrespecting President Barack Obama in person, publicly committing acts of deep disrespect that former “President” George W. Bush – who (in my estimation) was more reviled by more Americans than Obama ever has been – ever endured.
(The only public embarrassment that Bush ever endured, to my recollection, was toward the end of his illegitimate presidency, when an Iraqi threw his shoes at Bush during a press conference in Baghdad in protest of the Bush regime’s illegal, immoral, unjust and unprovoked Vietraq War, which resulted in the unnecessary deaths of thousands and thousands of the Iraqi’s fellow countrymen. [Unfortunately, both of the shoes missed their target.])
The two most glaring examples that Maher recounts are Repugnican Tea Party Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer thrusting her talon in Obama’s face on the tarmac in Arizona and Repugnican Tea Party South Carolina U.S. Rep. Joe Wilson screaming out “You lie!” during a live, nationally televised address to Congress that Obama was giving on the topic of health-care reform.
Maher quips that “if Mitt Romney really wants to win over conservative voters, he has to one-up Jan Brewer and spit on Obama’s shoes.”
Maher notes that as much as we on the left skewered Bush during his eight unelected, disastrous years of rule, we respected the office of the presidency and never disrespected Bush publicly in person. This kind of tacit agreement, Maher declares, ”has always worked for eighth-grade girls, and it’s always worked for the United States of America.”
Actually, I encourage the white supremacist Repugnican Tea Party traitors to continue their racist assaults on the president, the man who in 2008 received more popular votes than George W. Bush ever did in 2000 or in 2004, in actual numbers and in the percentage of the popular vote. (Bush garnered only 47.9 percent of the popular vote in 2000 — to Democrat Al Gore’s 48.4 percent – and only 50.7 percent in 2004, while in 2008 Obama garnered 52.9 percent of the popular votes to John McCainosaurus’ paltry 45.7 percent, and no other U.S. president ever received as many popular votes as Obama did.)
Racism doesn’t sit well with the majority of the nation’s younger voters, and as the older white supremacists continue to kick off, the Repugnican Tea Party should continue to go extinct. (Ditto for its patriarchy, misogyny and homophobia, which also are killing the Repugnican Tea Party’s future.)
Team Obama still searching for slogans
Not that I’m a huge fan of Barack Obama. But I have very different reasons for that than do the Repugnican Tea Party traitors.
I voted for Barack Obama in November 2008. Even when I walked into my polling place I wasn’t sure whether I would cast my vote for Obama or for independent progressive presidential candidate Ralph Nader, who of course had zero chance of winning but whose political views more closely match my own than do Obama’s (and whom I’d voted for here in California in 2000).
I had given Obama hundreds of dollars, mainly in order to help him defeat Billary Clinton in the 2008 presidential primary season, and because I knew that of course the next president would be from the two-party duopoly. I didn’t want a third Bill-Clinton (that is, Democratic-in-name-only) term in Billary Clinton, but with Barack Obama we got that anyway.
That Obama would be the first non-white president in U.S. history was a factor (not a huge factor, but still a factor) in my decision to, at the last minute, darken the oval next to his name on my ballot instead of Ralph Nader’s. Nader couldn’t win anyway, and it was at least a little exhilarating, for the first time in U.S. history, to have the option of voting for someone for president other than yet another white man.
And, call me naive, but I more or less believed Obama’s relentless 2008 campaign promises of “hope” and “change” (and their derivatives, such as “Change we can believe in”).
I didn’t expect Obama as president to achieve miracles, but I did expect him to use the political capital at his disposal. Yet, when he had both houses of Congress dominated by his party and when he had the American public’s good will behind him, Obama utterly squandered his political capital during 2009 and 2010, his best years to push through a progressive agenda – that “hope” and “change” that he’d promised us in return for our support of him.
Instead, in 2009 and 2010 Obama focused on not pissing off the Repugnican Tea Party traitors, but trying to sing “Kumbaya” with them – while shitting and pissing upon his base, whom he and his mouthpieces referred to (among other things) as “sanctimonious” and members of “the professional left.”
Smart: Kowtow to those who never will support you, ever, no matter fucking what, and tell those who put you where you are to go fuck themselves.
Reuters has a cute little article on how Team Obama knows fully well that it can’t reuse its empty 2008 slogans of “hope” and “change” for 2012 without being laughed off of the planet.
Long ago, I offered this snappy little slogan to Team Obama for 2012: Really This Time!
Team Obama, you can have that. No, really. It’s all yours. No charge.
In the meantime, the only way that I could see myself voting for Obama again is if the Repugnican Tea Party presidential candidate (“Christo”fascist Mormon Mitt Romney or “Christo”fascist Catholick Prick Santorum, most likely, it appears) were anywhere close to Obama in the polls here in California within about two weeks to Election Day.
With Repugnican Tea Party registration sitting at only a paltry 30 percent of registered voters here in California, the nation’s most populous state — and Democratic registration here being at 44 percent — I can’t see Obama losing California, and in the winner-takes-all Electoral College system, if you vote for anyone but Obama in California in November 2012, your vote essentially won’t matter at all, since Obama’s victory here essentially is a foregone conclusion (I put his chances of winning California and all of its electoral votes at least at 99 percent**).
Therefore, my 2012 presidential vote most likely will go to Green Party candidate Jill Stein, if she makes it to the November ballot.
(The U.S. Green Party is to choose its presidential nominee in July, and it will be Stein or Roseanne Barr. I love Roseanne, but she comes to the Green Party fairly late, and I hate it when in elections celebrity trumps political ability, such as happened here in California when Hollywood testosterone flick star Arnold “Baby Daddy” Schwarzenegger became governor and when former basketball star Kevin Johnson became Sacramento’s mayor.
That said, yes, if it came to that, I would vote for Roseanne Barr over Barack Obama. Hands down.)
*To be clear, I gather from news reports that “Jose,” while not an American citizen, has been in Arizona legally, on a visa. However, let’s face it: when the white supremacists talk about “illegals,” their real problem with these undocumented Mexican (or other Latino) immigrants isn’t the immigrants’ legal status. It’s the color of their skin.
**This model puts Obama’s chances of winning California’s 55 electoral votes at just over 96 percent. It also predicts that Obama will win re-election in November, with 303 electoral votes to 235 electoral votes for his Repugnican Tea Party opponent. That sounds about right to me. I expect that in November Obama will not do as well as he did in November 2008, but that he still will win re-election. (In 2008 Obama won 365 electoral votes to John McCainosaurus’ paltry 173.)